Gabriela Montero is not only one of the most talented pianists of her generation, but she is also one of the most innovative. The Venezuelan-born classical musician has won many awards for her recordings, compositions and performances, including a Latin Grammy in 2015 and the 2018 Heidelberger Frühling Music Award, given by the annual festival of the same name in Germany.
Poor Beethoven. A brief history of recent productions of his only opera, Fidelio, originally set in an 18th-century prison, has to include the following: a spaceship hurtling towards doom (director Gary Hill, Opéra de Lyon/Edinburgh); a fluorescent, Kafka-esque maze (Calixto Bieito, ENO); a white room denoting Freud’s “salon of the unconscious” (Claus Guth, Salzburg); and a real horse (Tobias Kratzer, Royal Opera House). Glyndebourne’s last staging, by Deborah Warner, more modestly, relevantly and arguably most powerfully, featured an ironing board and washing line.
Gabriela Montero, Kings Place review - improvising to a Chaplin classic is the icing on a zesty cake
The passengers on the ship taking them to a new life are brutally cordoned by the crew; enter the same fierce bass-register tritones which made us jump out of our seats as Gabriela Montero began her recital with Prokofiev’s Sarcasms, then a whiff of Rachmaninov’s Second Piano Sonata, and later, as our hero finds himself dollarless in a New York restaurant, echoes of the other Second Sonata in the programme. Prokofiev and Rachmaninov arrived from Russia in New York - Prokofiev via Japan, Honolulu and San Francisco, Rachmaninov via Finland, Sweden and Denmark - not long after the film was made in 1917; an inspired link, enriched by Kate Wakeling’s excellent programme notes.
The Atlanta Master Chorale virtual series “Behind the Scores” returns with a conversation between artistic director Eric Nelson and Atlanta composer Joel Thompson, who sprang to national prominence with his “Seven Last Words of the Unarmed.” Thompson, who graduated from Emory University and is now studying composition at the Yale School of Music, sang with the chorale for several years. His works have been performed by the chorale, as well as the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra and the University of Michigan Men’s Glee Club. The event is free. Registration required.